I always like it when a movie poster really means something, when you have to pay attention to notice what it’s about.
In this one, the poster looks old like parchment paper, which to me implies that it’s an old story. Jack O’Connell’s face is strong, his eyes are intense, piercing through you. The Japanese islands are red and evoke blood. They are strategically placed to look like bloody tears trickling down his face. It suggests pain, torture even, but the expression on his face lets you know that he’s resilient.
In case you’ve been living under a rock and never heard the name Louis Zamperini the Olympic rings might be another incentive to check out what it’s about. Adding the Olympic Rings at the bottom was also very smart and smooth because the main protagonist is an Olympian and it’s one of the most recognized symbols in the world.
To most people nowadays, the rings represent the five continents and since no continent is represented by any specific ring it could mean that the colored in ring is Asia. However, originally – according to Baron Pierre de Courbetin, its creator – the six colors of the rings, including the flag’s white background, reproduced the colors of all the nations, with no exception. Personally, looking at the poster I see a fairly white background – some coal dust got on it 😉 – and the colored in ring is Japan’s red sun from the flag.
If you look closely the Olympic rings are barbwred, which basically implies war, prison camps and suits the setting of the movie perfectly. It also gives a new meaning to the colored in barbwired olympic ring (e.g. death, the casualties in wars, Hiroshima, Nagazaki, etc.).
OK, I’m stopping now because I’m starting to sound like I have no life but to conclude, looking at the poster you just know that the film is about a strong, resilient man and his violent history with Japan.
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